1. Welcome Hearth.com Guests and Visitors - Please enjoy our forums!
    Hearth.com GOLD Sponsors who help bring the site content to you:
    Hearthstone Soapstone and Cast-Iron stoves( Wood, Gas or Pellet Stoves and Inserts)

Help with my Lopi 400PI, how to get more heat?

Post in 'The Pellet Mill - Pellet and Multifuel Stoves' started by jlinder, Dec 14, 2007.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. jlinder

    jlinder Member

    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2007
    Messages:
    9
    Loc:
    Oregon
    I just installed an older Lopi 400PI in my fireplace to help ease the high power bills from my electric heat. I've only ran the stove a couple of days, but I'm not really happy with the amount of heat I'm getting. My house is ~1300 sqft, new windows and insulated walls (it's a bit drafty, but better than the majority of older homes). The first night I had the stove set about 1/2 way up (no numbers for pellet feed), burned from 5:00pm until 7:00am and used 40lbs of "premium" pellets and still used the electric heat in the bedrooms. I would have expected to cook myself out of the living room and dining room that are right in the path of the stove, but didn't happen. I had a similar experience last night, ran the stove on the lowest setting all night and burned a little over 1/2 bag in 14 hours- still only half heated the living/dining room and not the bedrooms. It's been chilly here (for us anyway) lows at or near freezing last couple of nights. I'm thinking when our usual winter lows return of the mid 40's it will probably be a different story. So, how do I know if I'm getting the amount of heat from my stove that I should be? I'm gonna try some different pellets tonight, only buying a couple of bags until I know which brand my stove likes the best. Any suggestions?

    Helpful Sponsor Ads!





  2. hearthtools

    hearthtools Moderator Emeritus

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2006
    Messages:
    2,019
    Loc:
    Oakhurst, California, USA, Earth
    The Older Avalon/Lopi stoves are great heaters around 40K btu
    low will be around 1 pound per hour and high will be around 5 pounds per hour.

    So if you run the stove in the middle setting you will use about 2.5 pounds per hour or about one and half bags in 24 hours.


    Is your stove installed with Venting all the way up the chimney?
    Did you seal off the Top and bottom of the chimney? you could be loosing heat there because
    Pellet insert sucks air form the Fireplace firebox and it could be just sucking cold air from your fireplace and not recurculating the warmed room air to heat up more and more.

    Is the air adjusted properly?
    are you running the Convection (room air) blower at a decent speed to transfer the heat off the stove.
    LOTS OF STEEL in that stove.
  3. jlinder

    jlinder Member

    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2007
    Messages:
    9
    Loc:
    Oregon
    I've got venting running almost to the top of the chimney, about 3 feet short of the cap. I haven't sealed off the top of the firebox yet, wasn't sure what I needed to use there? I hadn't thought about that, you're right it is pulling cold air from the firebox. I also think I need to investigate the convection blower, turning the knob up and down changes the motor speed some but not much so maybe it isn't blowing at much as it should be. I played with the air adjustment, and think i got that set right to burn the first batch of pellets I bought.
  4. hearthtools

    hearthtools Moderator Emeritus

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2006
    Messages:
    2,019
    Loc:
    Oakhurst, California, USA, Earth
    you ran the pipe all the way up but a few feet from the top?
    why not the extra few feet and put a chase cap and pellet vent cap?

    If you did you a half reline YOU MUST seal off the damper area or you are going to suck Exhaust and soot back into the house and make you sick and or die.

    See this thread for more.
    http://www.hearth.com/econtent/index.php/forums/viewthread/9594/
  5. webbie

    webbie Seasoned Moderator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Nov 17, 2005
    Messages:
    12,379
    Loc:
    Western Mass.
    Good point, Rod.....

    With ALL insert and hearthstove installs, the fireplace block-off plate - at bottom, and preferably as close to the fireplace top as possible, is very important. Somewhere, somehow a myth has developed in this industry about just sealing only at the top - or at the front panels. But doing so can mean 30-50% of the heat ends up in the wrong place.

    See the "popular" articles link on my sig for the "how to make a block off plate" link and instructions. Also keep in mind that front panels, in just about any case, trap some heat behind them. Having them fit loose is a "good" thing in some units IF the fireplace block off is tight - because then some of the trapped heat can escape. Of course the ultimate (with some units) is to remove the panels alltogether (not certain it is possible with your unit) or replace with screening, etc.
  6. jlinder

    jlinder Member

    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2007
    Messages:
    9
    Loc:
    Oregon
    OK, I installed a block off plate and that seems to have helped maybe a little. My stove burns about 1 bag per day on the lowest setting, and unless I run the stove 24/7 it won't keep my small 1300 sq-ft house warm. I've pulled apart and cleaned just about everything, the convection motor & blower assy. looks newer and was clean. If you stand more than 8' in front of the stove you can't feel any heating blowing at you. I checked the rheostat voltage for the convection motor thinking maybe it was only running on low no matter how high I turned the knob, but it's working just fine.

    As a side note I'm in NW Oregon, todays low was 45. Todays high will be 45, pretty typical winter here. My home is very well insulated like a new home would be, but has insulation in the walls and attic and new windows.
  7. hearthtools

    hearthtools Moderator Emeritus

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2006
    Messages:
    2,019
    Loc:
    Oakhurst, California, USA, Earth
    Test to see how long you pellets are feeding for

    The auger timer block inside the control box
    controls the time off

    The Knob on the control (burn rate potentiometer) controls the time it feeds.

    Download the trouble shooting guide on our website
    It is linked on the bottom of this page
    http://www.hearthtools.com/parts/900_ps_1990_97.htm
  8. jlinder

    jlinder Member

    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2007
    Messages:
    9
    Loc:
    Oregon
    On low the auger is off 8 seconds, on about 2 seconds. On high, auger is only about for about 1 second then back only several seconds. Running nearly continuously.
  9. hearthtools

    hearthtools Moderator Emeritus

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2006
    Messages:
    2,019
    Loc:
    Oakhurst, California, USA, Earth
    The auger timing block has a pot to adjust the off
    time. On HIGH the auger should be on for 3
    seconds, and off for a split second. On LOW the
    auger should be on for 3 seconds, and off for
    approximately 10 seconds.

    see page 49
    http://www.hearthtools.com/parts/94peltsh.pdf

    this PDF
    will help you a lot

    DID YOU EVERY RUN THE PIPE ALL THE WAY OUT YOUR CHIMNEY?
  10. jlinder

    jlinder Member

    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2007
    Messages:
    9
    Loc:
    Oregon
    No, just installed the block-off plate. The installation manual for my stove doesn't show the liner has to all the way to the cap, but I'm guessing there must be some benefit?

    I'll time the auger with a watch tonight, and adjust accordingly.

    Is there any scientific way to know if the convection fan is moving the right amount of air without just replacing it?
  11. jlinder

    jlinder Member

    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2007
    Messages:
    9
    Loc:
    Oregon
    I took off the convection blower assy and turned it on to see how much air was leaving the blower assy to make sure there wasn't a restriction in the stove. It doesn't move a whole lot of air, hard to measure but less than the defrost on my car. So i'm getting full voltage to the motor when the blower knob is turned all the way up, but not much air. Does that mean my motor is TU? It doesn't look all that old, but the number matches what should be on this stove. Any suggestions?
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.

Share This Page